ART WORLD Q & A: Edition 8


For this edition of Art World Q&A, Los Angeles based gallery owner and collector, Niels Kantor, shares his knowledge of the art market and what venues are best for buying work online.

1. How has the art market changed over the last 20 years?

The Internet! Facebook, gallery websites, Instagram (notably my presence i.e @nielskantor/#nielskantor), Twitter.

2. Who are the contemporary artists that will stand the test of time and why?

Alex Israel – He’s smart, slow to produce, educated and understands the art market.

3. What is the difference between market and value in the art world?

One is real, one is false.

4. What role do you think taste plays in the decisions that important collectors make when buying new work?

99% eye, 1% luck.

5. What would you buy with $10k, $100k and $1 million?

$10k -Walter Price, $100k -Peter Halley,$1 million-Yayoi Kusama/Yoshimoto Nara

6. What are the advantages/disadvantages of buying at auction versus buying through a commercial gallery?

Buying from an auction that has positioned itself in the art world for decades has the advantage. The price is more established!

7. What criteria do you use in judging art?

My eye!

8. What criteria do you use in pricing art?

Price is determined by current auctions or past sales of auctions. Off the bat, young stuff and art of upcoming artists should start around $1,000 and $10,000.

9. What is long - term market value largely dependent on? How relevant is long - term market value with the fluctuation of auction prices going up or down each season?

That is where the 1% luck comes in. It’s evolutionary.

10. What determines the commercial value of art?

Supply and demand!

11. How are art fairs shaping contemporary art? What is the primary role of art fairs?

Fairs introduce new artists to the world, more so the younger fairs such as NADA.

12. What are your favorite online venues for buying art?

Paddle8, Sotheby’s, Christies, Phillips–It all depends on what art is available.

13. What do you look for in the art you collect?

Color and something I love, after that it needs to follow in the footsteps of our existing collection.

14. What is the best advise you can offer to someone who is ready to start collecting contemporary art?

Start slow and buy editions until you get your feet wet.

About Niels Kantor

Kantor Gallery was first founded in Los Angeles in the 1940’s by Paul Kantor, a renowned art dealer often credited with discovering and nurturing the talent of Richard Diebenkorn. Niels Kantor has been continuing the legacy begun by his father since 1994 when he reopened Kantor Gallery as a venue to showcase emerging talent as well as established artists. Since that time he has shown artists ranging from blue chip artists such as Jean-Michel Basquiat, Keith Haring, and Andy Warhol to emerging, mid-career artists including Kenny Scharf, Pheobe Washburn, Simone Shubuck, Yumiko Kayukawa and many others.

Between 2005-2007, Niels Kantor partnered with Chelsea gallerist Zach Feuer on Kantor/Feuer–a joint venture that allowed each to bring new and interesting artists to the Los Angeles area. After ending the brief but successful partnership, Kantor focused on art advising and building his personal collection. He is happy, however, to be back in the thriving Los Angeles art scene.

Niels Kantor is proud to reopen Kantor Gallery at 7025 Melrose Avenue. This exhibition space, with nearly 2,000 square feet, is proud to continue fostering the talents of young artists and allow them to showcase their works in the vibrant city of Los Angeles. Kantor Gallery also promises thought provoking group shows and the brightest of young talent.

To learn more about Kantor Gallery, please visit: